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International Journal of Primatology

, Volume 24, Issue 3, pp 467–491 | Cite as

Home Range and Frugivory Patterns of Mountain Gorillas in Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda

  • Martha M. Robbins
  • Alastair McNeilage
Article

Abstract

Mountain, western, and Grauer's gorillas exhibit broad differences in ecological patterns with western gorillas eating more fruit and having larger home ranges than their largely folivorous counterparts in the Virunga Volcanoes. We studied the home range and frugivory patterns of one group of Gorilla beringei beringei in the little-studied population of Bwindi Impenetrable National Park, Uganda, to compare with other populations and to investigate whether there was any relationship between patterns of frugivory and home range size. During the 3-year study, the gorillas ate 16 species of fruit on 27% of observation days. There was high variability in frugivory among the 3 years and no consistent seasonal pattern. Annual home range size was ca. 21 km2 for Years 1 and 2, and it increased dramatically to 40 km2 in Year 3. Home range size varied considerable between months and seasons, but there is no clear relationship between occurrence of fruit-eating and home range size. The group exhibited more fruit-eating and a larger home range size those ofthe gorillas in the Virunga Volcanoes. Their home range size is comparable to that of western gorillas, though Bwindi gorillas consumed less fruit. Home range size and utilization by all gorillas probably depends on a complex relationship between the distribution and abundance of both fruit and herbaceous vegetation and social factors such as male mating tactics.

Gorilla beringei beringei mountain gorilla home range frugivory 

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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Martha M. Robbins
    • 1
  • Alastair McNeilage
    • 2
    • 3
  1. 1.Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary AnthropologyLeipzigGermany
  2. 2.Institute for Tropical Forest ConservationKabale, Uganda.
  3. 3.Wildlife Conservation SocietyBronxUSA

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